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Teen pregnancy has become common due to various reasons that explain the nature of parenting, education, and socialization in modern societies.
The need to identify with groups, curiosity, peer pressure, parental negligence, and bad role models contribute to the increase of teen pregnancies. Emile Durkheim explained that deviance is important in society because it enables people to understand each other and promotes order. The author presented different roles of bad behavior in personality development.
Teen pregnancies refer to conceptions that occur in individuals that are under 20 years of age. These pregnancies are common because the church and society have failed to play their roles to ensure this problem is eliminated (Gale 2010). This discussion explores various issues about teen pregnancies and how society and church address this issue.
The church has failed to offer its followers lessons to ensure they abstain from sexual activities. This has led to the prevalence of teen pregnancies because youths do not perceive this to be a serious issue in their lives (Lindsay 2012). Therefore, the lack of proper religious teachings has promoted premarital sexual affairs and led to the prevalence of early pregnancies.
Also, modern churches offer forums where youths go out for camps and other activities. They meet and exchange ideas and later find themselves in secluded places, and this increases their chances of having intimate affairs. It is necessary to explain that religious youth camps have been converted into meeting places for youths to establish relationships (Gale, 2010).
Moreover, parents show bad examples to their children, and religious leaders have forgotten their responsibilities of shaping the behavior of their followers. Some church leaders have been caught in compromising situations with members of the opposite sex, and this becomes a bad example for youths.
Lastly, some Christians do not respect the sanctity of marriage and their families. They commit adultery and defile minors, yet their leaders do nothing to show their disappointments. Therefore, youths follow suit, and this leads to an increase in cases of early pregnancies (Lindsay 2012). Modern churches hardly provide moral and spiritual support to teenagers to ensure they do not engage in premarital sex.
The society has failed to produce responsible individuals, and this has led its followers to deviant behavior. The absence of strict rules to guide the relationships of youths has led them to believe that they can do anything they want and go unpunished. Therefore, they have resorted to engaging in secret sexual activities, and some of them get pregnant during these escapades.
Also, parents have neglected their roles in guiding and counseling children about sex. Most teenagers engage in bad activities because there is nobody to educate them about abstinence and the role of sex in relationships (Gale 2010). Moreover, drug and substance abuse has become part of teenagers’ daily routines. They use drugs and attend entertainment joints that promote pornography, and this motivates them to engage in sexual activities.
The society has permitted business activities that violate moral teachings and encourage youths to use drugs and engage in premarital affairs. There is no way teen pregnancies can be reduced if youths are allowed to use abusive drugs and watch pornographic movies (Lindsay 2012).
Lastly, there are no good role models to teach children the importance of abstinence, and this has led them to believe that they should engage in premarital sex to become famous.
The need to identify with some role models has led teenagers to have wrong perceptions about sex, and this has increased early pregnancies in society (Gale 2010). The society provides minimal support to teenagers to ensure they do not engage in activities that affect their growth and development.
Emile Durkheim and the Theory of Deviance
This scholar argues that society should punish deviant members for deterring others from committing similar crimes (Ritzer 2009). Therefore, teenagers that engage in premarital sex should be disciplined to realize their mistakes and prevent others from engaging in improper behaviors. This will affirm and define the norms regarding sex and its role in society and thus help them to avoid it and reduce risks associated with teen pregnancies.
Secondly, this scholar argues that people should be united in their fight to eliminate deviant behavior among members (Ritzer 2009). Therefore, teen pregnancies should bring the church and society together to ensure youths are offered quality education about sex. The society and church will become responsible and ensure their members follow their teachings, and this will promote good behavior among people.
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Durkheim argues that punishing deviant behaviors like premarital sex will encourage dominant groups to follow the norms and values that are important in fostering responsible conduct among the members of the society (Ritzer 2009). Also, this will discourage activities that put youths at high risks of engaging in bad behavior. Durkheim argues that deviant behaviors are common in society because people allow them to exist.
He claims that there is a need for people to join hands and condemn bad behavior in society. Therefore, teen pregnancies can be eliminated if individuals and institutions work together to educate youths and other people to understand the dangers of this vice.
Gale, S. (2010). Teen Pregnancy and Parenting (Current Controversies). Chicago: Greenhaven Press.
Lindsay, J. W. (2012). The Challenge of Toddlers: For Teen Parents-Parenting Your Child from One to Three (Teen Pregnancy and Parenting series). New York: Morning Glory Press.
Ritzer, G. (2009). Contemporary Sociological Theory and Its Classical Roots: The Basics. New York: McGraw-Hill.